JENNA NICHOLLS' Radio Parade, History Worth Repeating



Some albums take you back in time, while others make time irrelevant. Radio Parade by Jenna Nicholls is one of those albums.

Released in 2018, Radio Parade consists of seven songs. Each song has a distinct narrative, yet they are cohesive. The album's orchestrations range from ukuleles to steel guitar all mixed with jazz undertones. It takes you back in time while standing staunchly in 2019.

With an album like Radio Parade, one really has to choose which songs to write over. I wouldn't want to ruin the album for you! The first standout of the album is "Sweet Talkin' Ladies' Man." This tune sounds like a piece ripped straight out of a 1920's cabaret (Cue Liza Minnelli) mixed with 1950's honky-tonk piano stylings. Throw in Nicholls stifling vocals and impeccable falsetto, and you have a piece of music that you forgot existed.

Next comes Nicholls' ballad "Home." This is a heart-wrencher, as she leaves behind all her vocal acrobatics. Frankly, this song doesn't need them. Nicholls is a genius storyteller through her vocal inflections. This subdue ballad is reminiscent of Norah Jones but is distinctly Nicholls.

Then, just as you think you might have Nicholls figured out, she brings us "Millionaire." Leave the Jazz behind; it's time to visit Nashville. This upbeat, classic country-esque tune is easily something you would hear in today's "alt-country" world while standing firmly in the legacy of the likes of Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn.

Radio Parade proves that specific musical techniques and design never go out of style. While Nicholls still implements her modern form, her music pays homage to much that has come before. Instead of taking us back in time with her music, she proves that history is sometimes worth repeating.

Keep up with Jenna Nicholls herel

Gabe Crawford